Ben has been keeping us busy, running around, playing, and talking up a storm. He loves looking out the windows and telling us about every car, truck, or airplane he sees, hears, or imagines. He realized that his magnetic Leapfrog fridge letters could also stick on our front storm door (something neither of his parents had thought of) and enjoyed tromping back and forth from the kitchen to the living room, sticking the letters to the fridge and then to the front door. We have listened to the alphabet song so many times that he's starting to repeat letters, and can say "ABCD" with the song. We're also encouraging him to put words together so it's clearer what he wants than just saying "more." One of his new favorite phrases is "read book" - he loves his library of books and brings several over to us every day to read, sometimes over and over and over and over...
We went to a consignment sale last week and got this whole pile of fall/winter clothes, toys, book, and instruments (the lollipop drum and ladybug xylo are for work) for ~$65! Ben's closet is now stocked with 2 nice fall-weight hoodies ($2 for the pair!), 3 pj's, 4 pants, a nice argyle sweater, 6 long-sleeved shirts including an already-beloved Elmo one, and another tanktop since the weather's been so oppressively hot. We put away the Little People Market for a Christmas or birthday gift as Ben already has enough big toys to play with now. I was also thrilled to find the beautifully illustrated book The Snowy Day by Ezra Jack Keats, which had been on my list to add to Ben's library. Ben's favorites are the four small Tonka trucks we found; they have been his most played-with toys since we bought them!
Ben thinks the old stethoscope that Grandma gave him is an awesome toy, and ran up and down the hallway with it around his neck last week.
We were out at Uncle Kenny's a few weeks ago when Dave's Aunt Lynn was visiting from Las Vegas. Ben and Little Peter had a great time playing with building blocks and Ben and I petted Kayla and tried to catch the skittish new kitty, awesomely named Kitty Kitty Bang Bang!
Ben is also now able to get on the rocking panda that Kenny & Lynn got him all by himself and says good bye to the panda at night.
Lastly, here are some photos that Jerry has taken over the past few months over at their house. Ben has had grandparent time the last 2 weekends as Dave & I had 2 baby showers to attend. Ben, of course, had a wonderful time and regularly chatters about Opa (which he's been able to say for a few months), Brandy (their dog), and is working on "Grandma." Jerry reports that yesterday's favorite word was "grass" and it sent Ben into peals of laughter when they looked out the family room windows at the grass.
I think this is one of my favorite Ben pictures: